Bathtub Leak Detection

Written by Bathtub Advice

Most bathtub leaks are plainly visible as drips coming out of the tub spout. Occasionally bathtub faucets may leak in other places such as the hot or cold water handles. If you are unsure if your tub (or any fixture) is leaking you might try using your water meter to detect the leak.

Leaks in pipes should be fixed immediately since they can quickly develop into a serious break. Temporary repairs are only temporary, and wrapping the pipe usually fails.

If you find a fixture that is leaking, turn off the shutoff valve for that device. Then locate the leak. Try to tighten any fittings that leak. A quarter or half turn with a wrench might do the trick. Be careful not to over-tighten fittings. Another possible cause is that the pipes are undersized and the water velocity is too high.

Estimated faucet leakage rates

Drips
60 drops per minute = 192 gallons per month
90 drops per minute = 310 gallons per month
120 drops per minute = 429 gallons per month

Stream
3″ stream = 1,095 gallons per month
6″ stream = 2,190 gallons per month
9″ stream = 3,290 gallons per month

For more detailed leakage analysis check out the WaterWiser drip calculator.

For information on how to repair bathtub faucet leaks see the bathtub repair page.

Michael Joseph

Michael Joseph

Michael Joseph has more than 20 years of hands-on experience as an avid home handyman and had 10 years in the construction industry, specifically in the field of HVAC.
Michael Joseph

Last modified: September 12, 2017

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